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Night Duty Nursing Conference

  • : Melbourne VIC 3000

Because night duty nurses usually practice in less resourced situations as well as in the dark of night, they experience a range of particular challenges. Attend this conference and learn about:

  • How to cope with the demands of shift work
  • If you should wake your patient to do a BGL
  • How often pressure area care should be done overnight
  • What to do when your patient becomes unwell
  • How to communicate calmly during conflict
  • The recipe for creating a great team
  • Self-care and wellbeing strategies and much, much more ….

Don’t miss out on an opportunity to network with like-minded colleagues. Book now!


 Print Schedule

Day One



Registration and Refreshments


Fran Pearce

'I’m on Nights Again!' - Coping with the Demands of Shift Work

There are few areas in healthcare where resilience is as important than as is the case for nurses who work night duty. Often with fewer resources and sicker patients, nurses who work regularly or even occasionally at night can often feel a sense of disconnection from their colleagues and perhaps their friends and family. This introductory session will consider:

  • What are the problems that confront nurses who work at night in today’s workplace?
  • What practical strategies can help to overcome these common challenges?


Michelle Robins

Should I Wake My Patient? BGLs and Diabetes Emergencies at Night

Diabetes emergencies can occur for a range of reasons, cause a great deal of anxiety and may be life-threatening. At night the risk of hypoglycaemia remains high, however BGLs may not necessarily be checked at the same frequency as during the day. In this session you will learn about current best-practice nursing care for common diabetes-related emergencies with a focus on hypoglycaemia. Includes:

  • How often should a patient's blood glucose be measured over night?
  • What are the most common diabetes emergencies and what should I watch for?
  • Care of diabetes-related emergencies in the hospital and other settings
  • An update on the most common medications used to treat these conditions



Renee Di Giuseppe

Asleep or Unconscious? Assessing Neurological Function at Night

The general consensus amongst nurses is that anything to do with the brain is seen as difficult to understand. At night this can be even more challenging, as patients are asleep which must not be confused with a change in consciousness. Yet a neurological assessment need not be as hard as it seems. The purpose of this session is to take you through the basics of a neurological assessment, including the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS). Topics covered include:

  • What is the difference between being asleep versus being unconscious?
  • What does a GCS include and what does this tell you about a patient?
  • How often should a person’s neurological function be assessed overnight?
  • What else, other than a person’s GCS, should be assessed, e.g. limb strength?
  • Reporting changes - when must this occur?


Renee Di Giuseppe

‘Red Flags’ - What to do When Your Patient Becomes Unwell Overnight

It is not unusual for patients to deteriorate at times when care resources are limited, for example, at night. For instance, a nurse is likely to be required to look after more patients with less support and less staff around. Meanwhile, patients can become very unwell at anytime of the day or night. Using case scenarios this session will highlight ‘red flags’ of deterioration that you must be able to recognise, and look at what actions should take place. Includes:

  • What clues or changes in clinical observations may indicate a patient is becoming unwell?
  • What immediate assessment should be undertaken when you suspect a patient is deteriorating?
  • How should these changes in observations be documented?
  • When should I contact a medical officer in a hospital or ambulance in RACF?



Kerrie Davies

Chest Pain at 4 O’Clock in the Morning: What Do I Need to Do?

If your patient reports that they have chest pain at 4am while two of your colleagues are on a break, what would you do next? How would you assess the person? Would you be confident in knowing the cause of the pain? At night time where resources such as staff may be limited, nurses must feel confident that they can correctly assess and act on this serious concern. This interactive session will leave you feeling much more confident that you can answer these questions. Includes:

  • What to do when your patient reports they have chest pain
  • How to perform a quick cardiovascular assessment
  • Types of chest pain revealed
  • Latest evidence on the pharmacological and non-pharmacological management of chest pain


Kerrie Davies

Simplifying 12 Lead ECG Interpretation

12 Lead ECGs can often be seen as difficult to perform and interpret. Where do all the leads go and what exactly do they measure? This practical session takes you through 12 lead ECG interpretation in a step-by-step manner that will help you to understand different rhythms and basic ECG changes that are required to be quickly recognised. Includes:

  • Why are ECGs recorded?
  • Why are leads placed and what does each lead tell us?
  • How are ECGs recorded?
  • Key steps to remember when preparing a person for an ECG
  • Important ECG changes that nurses should be able to pick up



Fran Pearce

Not Documented, Not Done? A Guide to Writing at Night

If you did not write it, did it ever happen? How do you know if you are documenting correctly? This session looks at how proper documentation can safeguard your nursing practice and patient safety. Questions to be answered include:

  • What are the current guidelines on documentation?
  • How does documentation fit into clinical handover?
  • What if I accidentally forget to include something in a patient’s notes because I was so tired I couldn’t remember?
  • When is the optimal time to document patient observations, clinical pathways or progress notes overnight?


Day Two



Jan Rice

Is it Time to Turn? - Pressure Injury Prevention at Night

Pressure injuries are one of the most prevalent causes of preventable harm to patients. The development of such harm, often due to prolonged immobility, is now considered to be a failure of care. But what about overnight? Can a pressure injury develop, particularly in a high-risk patient at night while they are asleep? Is it just as important to worry about skin at night and should we wake patients at night to turn them? This session will answer these questions and includes:

  • How quickly can a pressure area develop?
  • Should patient’s skin be assessed and a risk assessment form be filled in overnight?
  • Does evidence recommend turning at risk patients during the night, even if they are asleep?
  • Best practice for preventing pressure injuries - 2 hourly? 4 hourly? What is best and what is achievable?


Taruni Falconer

Walking on Eggshells: Shifting our Approach to Conflict using our Feeling Chemicals

In the healthcare profession, where shift work is inevitable, we sometimes arrive at work feeling anxious. “Who will I be working with for the night? Is it that person who leaves me feeling safe and at ease? It is that “we-can-do-this-together” person who makes the tough night shift fly by enjoyably? Or is it that person I dread? The one I try to avoid?”

As social animals we have four major chemicals in the brain that influence our happiness (Endorphins, Dopamine, Serotonin and Oxytocin). Two of these are more selfish because they do a great job at getting us to survive. The other two are more selfless and help us connect with others in heart-warming and empathic ways. These selfless feeling chemicals that we all have, enable us to feel proud to be part of a team, an organisation, to prefer to deal with conflict in a healthy way.

So how do we take advantage of this information about our feeling chemicals to change just how we show up at work? Can we really do this? Can we catch ourselves when we are anxious? Can we notice inside ourselves when we prefer to avoid contact with that particular co-worker?

In this workshop you will have the opportunity to:

  • Gain practical insight from current Social Neuroscience on these four feeling chemicals we all have
  • Consider ways to apply this insight in our own work place
  • Generate and commit to one simple selfless behavioural practice that can overcome conflict



Amanda Wynne

The Use of Restraint - Whose Need is Being Met?

In patients are confused or who are behaving aggressively at night, the use of restraints may be considered necessary to try and promote sleep and reduce the impact on other patients or residents. However, restraining a person using a device should only be used as a last resort. Only if the risks of not restraining are outweighed by injury or harm may restraint be considered. This session reviews the legal ramifications for the use of restraint and will include:

  • What is the legal definition of restrictive practices?
  • On whom can restraint be applied and in what circumstance
  • What types of restraint can be used?
  • Is restraint an incident and therefore should it be documented?


Amanda Wynne

Obtaining Consent At Night - When is The Right Time?

Ascertaining a person’s cognitive ability can be challenging at night especially if they have been newly admitted or may be an unfamiliar resident or client. At a time when consent is needed for an emergency situation or routine procedure how can nurses best obtain consent from a person with impaired cognition? This interesting session will draw on legal case studies to consider the following:

  • What is consent?
  • What is implied consent?
  • The role of cognition in the consent process and does this change if people are drowsy?
  • Knowing when consent has been withheld and what to do about it



Fran Pearce

Lights Out! - Sundowner’s Syndrome

Nurses who work at night may notice that patients or residents with Alzheimer’s disease or Dementia may experience mood and behaviour changes in the evening. These changes can often come on quickly, be distressing to watch and can be difficult to manage. This session will consider:

  • What is thought to cause Sundowner’s?
  • How might Sundowner’s present?
  • Who is most at risk and can this risk be averted?
  • Does fear, anxiety and stimulation contribute to the problem?
  • Basic communication, practical environmental considerations and other solutions to proactively manage Sundowners
  • Strategies for de-escalating and managing aggression in the confused patient


Jill Beattie

We’re All In This Together - How to Create a Supportive Team Culture when Working Night Duty

Going to work knowing that you’ll be working with a great team can make coming to a shift seem all the more easier. This is especially so when you’re walking out the door as all your friends and family are heading home for the day. As well, working with fewer staff means teams at night need to be cohesive and support each other so that patient outcomes are not comprised. So how do we achieve this? This session will challenge you to look at your role within your team and consider:

  • Is there a recipe for a supportive team?
  • What makes effective teams achieve so much?
  • What sabotages teamwork?
  • How to successfully delegate work amongst a team without seeming demanding
  • How to show that you support and value the contributions of your team mates
  • What are key factors that encourage enthusiasm for shared goals and values?



Jill Beattie

Self-Care and Shift Work

Working at night can be stressful, fast-paced, demanding and often leaves nurses feeling isolated and exhausted. Looking after our patients who are often stressed and anxious means nurses, particularly those who work at night must be given tools to promote their own emotional health. How can we start and finish each shift feeling renewed and energised? This final and practical session will introduce three techniques that can reduce stress and anxiety so we can be the best version of ourselves when working shift work. We will look at:

  • Does our thinking contribute to our stress?
  • Will breathing differently make us feel different?
  • How can laughter change the way we feel?


The Goal Need for Program

Nurses who practice at night may find it more difficult to access education that specifically relates to their work environment. Their challenges may involve reduced availability of resources, increased risk, untoward clinical problems and patients who are sleeping rather than engaging in daytime schedules which makes observation more complex. Evidence-based knowledge of a nurse at night is crucial to confident, safe and effective decision-making.

Purpose of Program

The purpose of this education is to provide a program that focuses specifically on the needs of nurses who work regular or occasional night shifts.

Your learning outcomes:

Engage in meaningful dialogue with colleagues to improve safety and quality of patients throughout the 24 hour continuum of care

Use information relating to the implications of shift work on nurses’ health and wellbeing to enhance self-care and motivation

Provide up-to-date evidence-based clinical care relating to a range of conditions which can be problematic at night

Improve patient safety and reduce errors at night through knowledge of commonly administered sedation medicines


Fran Pearce

Fran Pearce

Fran Pearce is currently employed as an Education Coordinator at Austin Health. She has extensive experience in orthopaedic nursing, including ... Read More

Michelle Robins

Michelle Robins

Michelle is a Credentialled Diabetes Educator with 23 years experience in many aspects of diabetes care and education. She is ... Read More

Renee Di Giuseppe

Renee Di Giuseppe

Renee Di Giuseppe is a Critical Care Registered Nurse. She currently works in the Intensive Care Unit at a large ... Read More

Kerrie Davies

Kerrie Davies

Kerrie Davies has extensive nursing experience within the critical care arena, including 24 years in education. She has been a ... Read More

Jan Rice

Jan Rice

Jan Rice is a Registered Nurse with many years experience in surgical nursing. Jan is a member of the Venous ... Read More

Amanda Wynne

Amanda Wynne

Amanda Wynne is a barrister at the Victorian Bar whose practice includes family law, child abuse, family violence, mental health, ... Read More

Jill Beattie

Jill Beattie

Dr Jill Beattie is a Senior Research Fellow at Monash University, Victoria. Jill is also a mindfulness-based emotional fitness ... Read More

Taruni Falconer

Taruni Falconer

Taruni Falconer is a coach, keynote speaker and author based in Melbourne, Australia. Taruni designed and delivered the first research-based ... Read More


Night Duty Nursing Conference
Speciality Classification
Provider Type
12 hours
Start Date
End Date
12 hours
Price Details
$572.00 (two days)
Melbourne VIC 3000
Oaks On Collins , 480 Collins St
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